Richard Burns Rally

aka: RBR, Rally7
Moby ID: 15389
PlayStation 2 Specs
Included in See Also

Description official description

Licensed by the late 2001 World Rally Champion, Richard Burns, this rally game tries to find a niche by adding more depth and realism to the racing experience. This is reflected in the car handling, the influence of the weather and the endless tweaking of the car set-up. There are eight officially licensed cars to choose from, with familiar names such as the Subaru Impreza, Citroen Xsara, Peugeot 206, Mitsubishi Lancer Evo and Toyota Corolla, but you need to unlock them by finishing school lessons, winning a rally or making it to the end of a season.

Next to the usual training, quick races, rally seasons and multiplayer mode (only 4-player 'hot-seat'), you can test your skills in the Richard Burns Challenge, a time trial mode in which get the chance to go head to head with Burns himself. There are 36 stages in total, divided over six countries. The in-game music has been produced by Paul Oakenfold, Andy Hunter, Pepe Deluxe and the Plump DJs.

Spellings

  • 理查德·伯恩斯拉力赛 - Chinese spelling (simplified)

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Credits (Windows version)

175 People (139 developers, 36 thanks) · View all

Reviews

Critics

Average score: 78% (based on 20 ratings)

Players

Average score: 3.7 out of 5 (based on 37 ratings with 2 reviews)

Unmatched Rally Simulation

The Good
- realistic car handling - weather effects the grip niveau - rally school - detailed car damages

The Bad
- not much tracks / countries to race

The Bottom Line
Colin Mcrae Rally started the simulation revolution. Until 1998 rally games were pure arcade racers with head to head racing on circuits. Colin Mcare Rally brought up the idea to simulate the real thing - racing on stages against the clock. And it was - great!

A few years later Richard Burns Rally (RBR) appeared, named after the other British WRC Champion, Richard Burns. This game put realism on a whole new level.

This game forces you to drive the rally school. If you think: "Hey it's a racing game, I know those, flat out all the way and brake before the turns, no problem" - the first experience in RBR will be that you smash your car against a tree in under a minute on the track. So you have to do the rally school, and it's good and worth the time invested. You learn to drive your car slowly, just to get the feeling, then some theoretical braking tests and get a feeling for the different handling on tarmac and gravel. The advanced test will teach you skills like left foot braking (braking while keep the foot on the throttle) or the Scandinavian flick (take tight turns with the help of the pendulum effect).

After that you can start in the championship through the 6 countries (Great Britain (gravel) , Japan (gravel / tarmac), Finland (snow), France (tarmac), USA (gravel), Australia (gravel)).

There are three difficulty setting for the competitors, while on the first you can win the championship by simply accomplishing the stages with decent speed and avoiding crashing, the hardest setting will let you struggling just to finish in the points.

You can also adjust the damage level of the car interdependently of the opponents strength. The safe setting will let you crash all the way through a stage, while on the realistic setting a single hit of a tree can be the end of your rally. The damage model is very detailed, as you can smash the bodywork of your car, doors and bonnet can get opened and get lost, the windshield brakes. But also the mechanical parts of the suspension / mounting / wheel can get damaged and get you an nasty handling. Also your cooler can get a damage so you have to drive carefully not to overheat the engine. Not to forget possible damages to the clutch or brake system.

So what's the fun part of this Game? Well, it's a unique experience to drive a rally car! After you learned that full throttle will end you rolling, you need to judge just how fast you should be going. It's always a challenge to be on the limit and cutting corners just on the edge but not to crash while loosing control of the car. No matter how good you are, you will always have those moments misjudging a turn and smashing your car in a spectacular manner - sometimes in the lead and just a few meters before finish. But even such events are very cool to watch in the replay.

The Game has even now a huge fan base, with Mods like RSRBR it is THE Online Rally game for Simulation fans.

Windows · by cosmo ruski (39) · 2012

Love letter to the developers of this rally game

The Good
Once I really dedicated myself to get into this game and complete rally school, I realised it wasn't in fact that difficult to drive through a rookie rally season and coming out as a winner.

After this stage, the simulation started to get interesting and addictive. Never mind the little variety of rallies or cars or the truly horrible co-driver. I started to see the good aspects of the RBR experience. And these include the co-driver at least gives reliable information on the next corner, and indeed he did his job well on this. It didn't matter that the engine of all cars sounded the same, at least one point less to distract the player from the actual racing experience.

While complaining about the lack of graphical diversity in the rallies, I do have to admit there are some details here and there like crows starting up and flying away or a rabbit running across the track. And there's this fog veil in the Great Britain stages that looks awesome. Bumps in the road look quite tangible. Rain and snow indeed impair visibility in this simulation (I can only advise you to turn off the cockpit view with the wipers on in snow).

I can't explain it, but once I've set up personal best times in all stages, I was wondering if I couldn't get better and better. It started to be so much fun to improve on the stages, even the ones I hated. I liked the fact that with every start of a rally season the weather is randomly generated, and even the sequence of stages changes. WRC and CMR don't offer this kind of diversity.

And of course the damage model is great. The sense of speed is great, the tickling sensation before every crest, every K corner or even medium corner, the sudden, but announced tightening of a corner, when you have to quickly decide if you're going too fast or if you could in fact put in a little more throttle. Gee, this is the greatest motivator of all: learning while driving stages over and over. And then there's still Richard Burns himself to beat, which up to now I haven't managed to, but it doesn't matter.

The Bad
It took me a long time to really get into this simulation. When I was first doing some rally school units, I also played WRC 04 and CMR 2005 on the side, and I liked those titles a lot more because they were simply more fun and looked better. They offered more thrill with less practice and patience.

Initial difficulty aside, RBR looked so unappealing to my eyes. The fonts are too small and narrow making legibility on a standard TV set (I'm talking about the old CRT) very difficult. The in-game graphics were just about okay, and the rally stages didn't offer much general diversity. Also, I was disappointed to see there were only six rallies in total to experience.

The co-driver, oh my gosh, and his voice were so devoid of any passion, and the sound quality was comparatively bad too. It was enough to put me off trying harder for months to come.

Also, the developers didn't manage to put much into the console's memory so that every little bit has to be loaded from the disc. This includes restarts of the same stage and replays. When you save your progress within a rally season after you've completed the last stage, the next time you load the season you'll first have to go through travelling from the last country back to headquarters, then continue to the next country, no matter if you saved your progress again in the main menu. What a load of half-arsed rubbish!

As for the selection of rally cars, I don't mind so much that there will be only eight of them to choose from once you've completed certain events. But was it really necessary to have two similar Subaru Impreza models in the end, rather than including a Ford Focus? I keep reassuring myself in believing it was a licencing issue. But it remains disappointing nonetheless.

Furthermore, I didn't enjoy the fact I was limited to choose to go through a whole season or only a single rally stage. Why on Earth is there no option to do a single rally with all stages?

The Bottom Line
If you're new to rally games and would like to have more outright fun above anything else, then I suggest you should rather go for the World Rally Championship series. It looks fantastic, has lots of rallies in store and the damage model is laughable even in expert mode.

If you prefer to have the best of both worlds, fun and more realism, go for the Colin McRae series. It looks great as well, there are enough rallies to choose from, the damage model is more realistic than in WRC, the sound is great, the variety of cars is great, and in general it's all around a great rally game to recommend to anybody in the first place. But unfortunately, it does have some serious drawbacks too.

Now, if you're really willing to get into the thick of it, if you are prepared to put some time and effort into a proper simulation, then you're probably ready for Richard Burns Rally. Don't be distracted by superficial flaws, after a while they won't matter to you any more, no, you will be savoring the whole damn thing, looking forward to beating your personal best times, to beat the pro season and Richard Burns himself. This game is really rewarding in the long run!

PlayStation 2 · by CoffeeCrack (20) · 2014

Trivia

Cancelled GameCube version

A GameCube version of this game was developed too, but it was cancelled halfway though the project due to the bad sales figure GameCube games where showing.

Lineage

This game is a descendant to the Rally Championship series of games. Before it was licensed as "Richard Burns", the internal development name for this game was simply Rally7, as in Rally Championship 7.

Mods

You may presume that the game was developed for the consoles and then ported to the PC, as there are no TCP/IP or LAN multiplayer options, but strangely, it is the other way around. Luckily, a programmer called Racer_S developed the multiplayer mod RBRnet which allows you to race against an opponent (ghost car) over a network. You can download the tool here.

PC version media differences

The PC version was released on DVD in the UK, France, Germany and Australia and on CD-Rom in Spain, Italy, Czech Republic and Poland. As for now, there are no plans for a North American release.

Awards

Richard Burns Rally won four awards at the 2004 Sim-Racing Awards, voted by users at sim racing website Blackhole Motorsports: Best Gameplay, Best Physics Model, Surprise of the Year & Game of the Year!

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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Sciere.

Additional contributors: Unicorn Lynx, Alaka, MegamanX64, DreinIX, Victor Vance.

Game added October 30, 2004. Last modified February 11, 2024.